[The Detroit News]

A Detroit-based program that seeks to improve community health in one of Detroit’s poorest and hardest-hit neighborhoods is receiving national recognition and a $75,000 grant on Tuesday in Washington, D.C.

“Chandler Park Healthy Neighborhood Strategy” was selected to receive a $75,000 grant for their efforts to improve community health from the BUILD Health Challenge, a national awards program.

Chandler Park anchors zip code 48213 on the east side of Detroit, where a predominantly poor, African-American and uninsured population suffers from a lack of access to safe, reliable transportation, quality classrooms and nutritious food.

These social obstacles correlate strongly with the neighborhoods’ leading health challenges: high infant mortality, premature mortality, and high levels of asthma, heart disease and COPD.

The city of Detroit and community champions have already made progress in revitalizing the 200-acre Chandler Park.

The BUILD Health Challenge Grant will allow the collaborating partners behind the “Healthy Neighborhood Strategy” initiative to accelerate their efforts to restore the areas around the park — clustering education, recreation, conservation, and green infrastructure around a community gathering space to improve safety, make it easier for residents to stay active, and rebuild a cohesive neighborhood.

The Chandler Park Healthy Neighborhood Strategy is a partnership led by Eastside Community Network, St. John Providence Health System — Community Health Investment Corporation, and the Detroit Department of Health and Wellness Promotion.

The initiative will be honored at the BUILD Health Challenge Award Ceremony on Tuesday in Washington, D.C., by Dr. Karen DeSalvo, the acting assistant secretary for Health in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the five funding organizations: the Advisory Board Company, the Kresge Foundation, the Colorado Health Foundation, the Beaumont Foundation, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.